This title is too long!:Volume2 Chapter7

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Chapter 7 - Time to Play[edit]

‎I'm a High School Boy and a Bestselling Light Novel author, strangled by my female classmate who is my junior and a voice actress.

This is my current predicament.

Nitadori, who knocked into me--

Was crouched on me, with my limbs in the air--

Choking my neck.

And still continuing to choke.


I can vividly remember everything that had happened till this point--

But in the end, I still have no idea why Nitadori wanted to kill me.

Why's so Nitadori desperate?

Why did Nitadori become so desperate out of a sudden?

Well, if I don't know, I guess anything's fine.

Because of that, I gave up on searching for the answer.

More importantly, let's think about other things with the little bit of remaining time I have left.

If I die here, what will happen?

If I'm to bid farewell to this world in this comforting shaking, what will unfold?

All sorts of thoughts became quick electronic signals that twirled about in my pitch black mind.

The answer easily appeared in my mind.


First off, 'Vice Versa' would end at the eleventh volume's draft that was completed.

I won't be able to convey the ideas I thought of, like Shin's future, the secrets of Reputation that were related to such, the world viewpoint that was created.

In other words, there is no ending to this work.

The readers might be feeling pissed at how the work ends, and I'm really sorry about that.

But for me--

It's not that bad thinking about how I managed to create the first novel in my last year of middle school, and have it last until the eleventh volume. Of course, this isn't a good thing either.

An author's death before an anime airing would probably cause much discussion.

Before it airs, there might be words like 'this is dedicated to the original author, who died prematurely."

I really want to see what kind of visuals would go with that OP theme, but well, I guess I got no say in this.


What will mom think about this?

I don't know.

This is the one thing I don't know.

And I won't be able to know.


Which year was I born in?

How many years passed after that?

I definitely lived for more than 10 years.

It's a long time. A lot of things happened.

I read a lot of books.

I worked hard to become an author.

I even became an author.

My books sold well.

I have a good life.

I'm really happy.

What I'll really miss is--

Miss is--





Wait a moment.


Just in case, if I'm to die here--

Will Eri Nitadori be taken for a murderer?


Nitadori will probably be able to escape, I guess?

But the Japanese police are pretty good, so I guess she'll be caught quickly.

Will she be convicted for homicide?

Isn't that really bad?

Won't this really cause her much trouble?

What about the After Record tomorrow?

Who's going to take over as Meek?

No, more importantly than that--

What'll happen to the 16 year old Nitadori?


Ah, no good.

This isn't good.

I can't die here.

Let me correct myself.

I don't care when exactly I'll die--

But I can't die here now.

Absolutely not.

I must stop her.

I must stop Nitadori.

No matter what.

My mind began to move.

How's my body now?

Can I still move?

No, got to move.

Move it.


My hands--

Reacted to my weak will.

I slowly lift my hands. In fact, I might have moved very fast, but the actions I saw were very slow.

My right hand moved faster, by about 30cm. My left hand continues to rise lazily, currently 10cm away from the floor.

My right hand grabs the long, pretty black hair dangling from Nitadori's head.

In fact, I wanted to grab her arm or body, but even so, it didn't matter.

According to what the books record, human hair is very firm. If I'm to grab a large handful of hair and tug at it, her body will probably lose balance.

It's a terrible act to pull a girl's hair.

As a male, this is the worst action possible. I shouldn't do this after all.

But just this once, please forgive me.

I'll apologize to Nitadori later, so please forgive me.

I command my right arm to 'pull'.

I know that the electronic signals were flickering in my pitch dark mind, flowing through.

The arm's willing to listening to my command. I tug hard at Nitadori's hair--

Something slipped off.

The hair falls from Nitadori's head.


The long, black hair falls completely from Nitadori's head.

And while the hair's being pulled down, the black hair covering the head shakes, lifting up the other end of the hand.

My right arm let out a loud thud, hitting the floor.

In other words, my arm reached the lowest possible position.

As I am still holding onto the hair, Nitadori's black hair fell off, and landed on my fist, arm and right flank.

Did I just pull off Nitadori's hair along with her scalp!?

Such delusions entered my mind.

I imagined Nitadori giving off a blood curdling scream as blood splattered from her head, and was about to let out a voiceless shout of shock.

At the next moment, I saw it.

On the head where Nitadori lost her hair, within my vision that was suddenly brightened, something seemed to flying from the center to the right.

I merely saw it for just an instant, but I know very well what it was.

It's a net. A thin black net, draped upon Nitadori's head

The black hair fell after it was pulled, and the net slipped off. The net then flung off like a rubberband, vanishing from my sights.



Nitadori's hair flutters.


It's not the black hair that falls upon me. I know very well that the black hair is a wig.

What's left on Nitadori's head is her real hair.

It's held down firmly by the wig, but now that it's unraveled, the hair falls towards me due to gravity.

The hair color is a light brown, close to grey; short hair that isn't enough to cover the face.


Her fringe touches my left hand, dropping towards the left hand that manages to rise to the height of the right hand, albeit later.

The left arm rises later than the right arm, but it's now higher than the latter.

Even I'm not sure as to what I'm doing.

My left hand approaches Nitadori's face, like a biological creature that won't obey my instructions.

I pat it down.

My hand brushes from Nitadori's right side to the left side.

I did not hit her face, but from her temples to the top of her eyes.

To my eyes, all the actions appeared so slow, so the left hand seemed to caress past the face so fluidly.

But in fact, that might have been a fast slap.

I pulled at a girl's hair, and gave her a lashing…

Ah, I'm really a terrible guy for committing such atrocities one after another.

But it's too late.

I knocked Nitadori down.

The glasses I usually see on Nitadori, the glasses with the lens soaked with tears--

Dropped to my right.

He heard the glasses land far away, and within my vision, my left hand had reached the right.

Nitadori's tears too flew slowly at the instant.

The tears slowly progressed in the air, dripping on my face and nose bridge.

I then saw Nitadori's eyes, and the pupils in those eyes.

There were three of those pupils.


There's no doubt that there were 3 pupils.

The pupil in the center of the girl's left eye was brown.

The right eye had a brown pupil, and a faint grey pupil that was hard to discover due to the backlight.

I see three pupils.

They are cuter, as compared to when her hair shifted.


"Even if I'm going to die, I'm able to feel fear in something other than death."

Had such a precious experience.


Who is she?

I thought the one wanting to kill me is Nitadori.

I see, I understand that I'm about to die here.

However, that'll cause her so much trouble, so I changed my mindset, wanting to stop her.

And after some panic.

In the end--

The one strangling me is someone else.



Who is this person?

Who's this person with short brown hair and 3 pupils?

An alien?

In that case, which planet did she come from?

How did she arrive?

Speaking of which--

Does she understand Japanese?

No, that's not it.

Calm down.

She's not an alien.

She's Eri Nitadori, not anybody else.

The long black hair is a wig, her real hair is light brown, and--

Her color contact lense is shifted.

There were two pupils in Nitadori's right eye, and the dark brown pupil is shifted far to the left side. The center of the pupil became white, so I know.

The color contact is meant to hide the color of her right. Her actual pupil color is a light grey--or to be precise, she has a 'grey iris'.

Is the left eye the same?

I tried my best to gather my consciousness, but it did not seem to be the same. If she was wearing contacts, there should be a clear line there.

If that's the case--

If the right eye is the one with the color contact lense--

All sort of thoughts quickly flowed through my head, swirling along with the final lights before that.

I know of such a person.

I know of some who's born with heterochromia.

I read a letter from someone who's born with heterochromia.

The backpack left at my seat.

The draft of the eleventh volume that's left inside.

I see.

So that's how it is.

Ahh, I get it.

I get--

The final lights gave me a hint after all.


I'm being choked on the neck.

In other words, Nitadori's holding down the sides of my carotid arteries--

And less than 10 seconds passed.

However, my mind's about to reach its limit.

The scenery in front of me suddenly got down.

My mind, working so hard until the very end, is starting to lose strength.

This isn't good.

I'll be losing consciousness, and I won't be able to see anything.

I know that despite that, humans won't die immediately.

However, I won't be able to stop Nitadori.

If my blood supply continues to remain cut off like this, I won't be able to wake up after a few minutes. I'll probably die for sure.

My head feel very heavy.

Really, I can't see anything in the darkness.

But, somebody--

Please save.

Somebody, please save.

Please save her.

And before I lose consciousness completely.

I can hear a woman's shriek.












Those warm hands,

Just feel so--

So comforting.






When my eyes open--

I see the lights on the ceiling, and police officers in uniform.

I'm not dead yet?


"Hey! You alright?"

The owner of the voice is a middle-aged police officer in uniform. I'm lying face up, and he's standing to my right. The left side's the wall.

I really want to answer that I'm fine.


I answer. In this situation, I can't say that I'm fine.

But I understand.

I know that I'm about to recover soon. My mind's becoming completely clear.

The pitch black darkness is no longer.

"You alright? Hey!"

Faced with another question,

"I'm fine. I'm awake."

I answer as such,

"Do you know your name?"

"Of course--"

And I say my name.

"Do you know the date today?"

"May 15th, Thursday."

I answer. He never asked me what day is it, but I add on just in case.

"Does your head hurt?"

"No, feels good now."

"Do you feel hurting in your body somewhere?"

"No, it doesn't hurt at all."

"Need an ambulance?"

"No, no need for that. Can I get up now?"

"Please, take it easily though."

I exert strength in my abdomen, and slowly lift my upper body.

Then, I turn my body to the right, and put my feet down. No problems with this action at all.


I look around the room I'm in.

It's about 8 tatamis wide, with the tables, chairs side by side. It appears to be an officer, but it's a little messy. The tables and chairs designs look simple, plain.

I turn my eyes aside, and see simple beds leaning on the wall, forming two Ls.

Of course, I'm on one of the beds, and I can smell the stinging disinfectant. He can hear a slow rumbling of the trains from afar.

I know without asking where I am. It's the sick bay in the station. I'm in it now.

I can see the clock on the wall to my left.

I see the digital display. Less than 2 minutes passed since the Limited Express arrived.

And without asking, I know what happened.

I lost consciousness, but I wasn't choked to death. She probably let go just a few moments afterwards.

The train then reached this station.

I don't know if I'm stretchered here or carried here, but I manage to regain consciousness immediately.

I'm not dead.

Thank goodness.

Really, thank goodness.

Anyway, really, thank goodness. However, there's something more important now.

How's Nitadori doing?

I immediately got my answer. That's because there's a girl with her head lowered, sitting on another bed under the clock.

It's a bright brown short hair. She's looking down, and I can't see her, but from the jeans and the light blue sweater attire, I can tell that it's definitely Nitadori.

She's sobbing.


I can hear a feeble sobbing voice.


There are two women seated beside Nitadori.

They seem to be cuddling Nitadori, and seem to be holding her down, preventing her from running away.

Without any explanation, I know that the one to the left of Nitadori is Miss Conductor. The conductor on the Limited Express we were on.

Then, I start to deduce..

The shriek I hear before I lose consciousness was from her. She's my savior.

Miss Conductor must have arrived at the scene right on time, and tried to stop Nitadori who would have strangled me to death if she kept it up, before notifying the attendant on the platform.

Another woman was seated opposite Miss Conductor, and she too appears to be in her late twenties. She has short, black hair, and is wearing a navy blue suit with pants.

She's touching Nitadori on the back with her right arm, appearing to be comforting the sobbing Nitadori desperately. Nitadori's luggage was placed by her side.

I don't know who she is, but I can deduce. I guess that should be the case.

There's also a middle aged male staffer who's looking perturbed her being dragged into in trouble, and another young police officer who appears to be 20. There are 7 people in this room.


I slowly look around the room, and finally, at the basket beside my bed, looking at the thing inside.

It's my backpack.

The zip that should have been sealed up is open, and I can see my laptop inside. The draft that should have been inside the bag is stuffed messily into my bag.

It's really as I expected.

Everything is as what I thought.


I guess he could tell that I'm being rather nonchalant about it.

"Now then--what happened, exactly?"

The middle aged police officer standing beside me asks me with a gentle yet firm voice.

I see. This is a precious hint. Nitadori hasn't said anything.

For caution sake, I ask back,

" haven't heard from her?"

The police officer shakes his head.

"Nope. She's been crying all the time. Of course, once she calms down a little, I intend to question her."



I feel that I'm a shallow person.

I read a lot of books for a long time, and due to the influence of books, I tried to write a novel, managed to debut successfully, and my work's successful enough to be adapted into an anime. However, I'm just a shallow person who's just that much.

Even so, since I found what I have to do, I should be working hard, aiming for that goal.

No matter how arduous it is, if there's only one way to do that, I should do it courageously.

What I'm going to do next isn't something that allows for failure.

If I ask myself if I'm able to do it, I suppose I probably won't be able to.

If not for this situation, I definitely won't try such a thing, let alone do it.

To be honest, I really want to run away. Run to a hiding place.

Shouldn't I have made that kind of determination?


But if I don't do this, right now--

I won't be able to help Nitadori.

This is the first and last chance.

All I can only do is to go all in now.


And so, I--

While I sit up on the bed--

I shout loudly in my heart.


Time to Play.


I suddenly stand up, causing those looking at me to be taken aback.

There's a mirror hanging on the wall behind me. I already saw the mirror when I was lying down.

So I quickly turn around.

And look at the mirror.

There are some clear long fingerprints on the sides of my throat. Those are the marks left behind by Nitadori, and I guess they won't be gone for quite a while. I feel that her strangling skills aren't great.

I lift my chin, and shake my head around.

"Oh--oh! There are some obvious marks there!"

I declared loudly.

At the same time, Nitadori continued to sob weakly,


But she stops the moment she let out this funny voice.

"Erm...what about that?"

The middle aged police officer asked.

I turned my eyes from myself in the mirror to the police officer who's very close to me.

And then, I notice--

That person's eyes are really sharp, like a dagger. To be honest, I'm really scared.

But right now, I don't have the time to be scared.

I inhale.

"There's nothing to say! --erm, I guess I have to say something , right?"

"If you don't, I'll ask her."

"I got it! I'll say! I--told her to strangle me!"

The police officer's eyes are now as sharp as an eagle. It's really scary. I'm sorry for lying, I'm really sorry. But please forgive me for today.

"Why's that?"

The police officer's questioning voice becomes so deep it's really scary. My legs are shaking, my thighs unable to exert strength. I really want to sit down, I really want to run away.

But to hide my shivering, I continue to move my body, making exaggerated actions.

"Because it's a nice feeling to be knocked out by a collar choke."


"Do you know judo, Mr Police Officer?"

"I suppose."

'I know a little about 'Yawara'--"

This isn't a lie. I read an entire collection of a girl's judo manga of the same time, Yawara!. That manga's really interesting.

"It's rather comfortable to be almost knocked out when being held down by a collar choke."

"Hm, so?"

"So, I asked her to do that."

"'Her', as in?"

The girl with the ridiculously dyed hair there--my girlfriend."


Nitadori stops sobbing, her head remains lowered,


Only to quickly lift it, so fast that her head of hair flutters gently along with it.

The hair's really pretty as it danced, probably because her real hair's thin and light.

I look at Nitadori's face.

She's been crying, so her face is all riddled with tears and snot.

Her scleras are completely red. The iris within the balls are of a different color. The right eye is slightly grey, and the left eye a deep brown.

Anyone can tell that it's obvious heterochromia.

The light brown hair is coupled with the white tender skin and an upright nose bright. Her looks alone would have people doubting if she was Japanese.

My eyes met Nitadori's.

Several minutes ago, our eyes did meet, but the situation now is completely different from before.

Miss Conductor, standing beside Nitadori, is looking at me uneasily, skeptically.

And the woman shielding Nitadori from the other side is looking at me.

She's clearly glaring at me now.


"In other words, you--"

The police officer with eagle eyes says to me.

I turn my sights unwillingly to that terrifying person.

If I have to lie, I have to look at him right in the eyes. I understand this well. Nitadori has been doing this all this while.

"So you're saying that you weren't really killed by that girl?"

I want to run away, but right now, I have to hang on,

"Kill? Ack? What are you saying?"

I feel that my legs are still shaking.

But I can't admit defeat. I can't run away. I can't give up.

Didn't her script tremble a lot once? Didn't she perform better afterwards?

She chanted a spell. Even I can do that.

"Sorry...but why exactly did things turn out as it is?"

"That isn't right? But that Conductor there said she saved you from being killed."

I guess so.

Again, I look over to Miss Conductor.

It'll be great if I can use telepathy now. But I don't have such skill.

Miss Conductor, I'm sorry.

Your judgment was correct.

I was nearly killed by Nitadori.

It's very likely that I would have died if you didn't happen to pass by.

You're my savior.

From this outcome, you saved Nitadori too.

I'll never forget this grace.

I'm so grateful that I'll write a book with you as the protagonist one day.

And then, I'll give half of the publishing fees to you.


Please act as the antagonist now. There's no other choice here.

I'm really, really sorry.

One day in the future, soon after, I hope to tell you the truth.

I'm really sorry.


"What are you saying? That's not it!"

I shout with all my might.

"There wasn't anyone down there, so I thought I just wanted to do a little on the corridor...erm...flirt around a bit! I said that before, right! That the feeling of being strangled is really comfortable! It's just the misunderstanding of Miss Conductor, so she shrieked out loud, then Nitadori exerted strength due to her shock, I thought it was bad, but I got knocked out before I can give up!"

After hearing my words, Miss Conductor's face paled.

"...I-I...ah, no…"

Miss Conductor's face is so pale she stopped what she's saying.


And then, she's unable to say anything.

It's probably because she's pointed out that she's mistaken, and couldn't give up on that possibility.

Considering the possibilities of 'a girl wanting to strangle a boy' and 'a girl making out with a boy'--

The latter was more probable.

"Speaking of which, I was seated next to her before this. Miss Conductor should know that best. We rode the same ride to Tokyo so many times already!"

I told the police officer, and he turned his sharp stare towards Miss Conductor,

"Hm? Is that so?"

The young police officer and the attendant too look at her.


With everyone watching her, the poor Miss Conductor answers sheepishly,

"I did...see them...together a few times…"

Due to the wig, color contacts and glasses, Nitadori's appearance now differs greatly from before--but because of the similar clothing, Miss Conductor's able to recognize her as Nitadori. She's saved.


The police officer then continues to think about it--

And then, he asks the woman beside the dumbfounded Nitadori,

"Miss Kamishiro."

"Hm, is anything the matter?"

So she's called Miss Kamishiro. I don't know how the kanji goes, but it does sound cool, matches her sharp, perfect attitude. One day, I'll use that as a character name.

I've already guessed who Miss Kamishiro is, as she continues to answer with a dignified voice.

The police officer asks Miss Kamishiro.

"Do you know him?"

"Yes, kind of…"

Miss Kamishiro notes vaguely.

Now's the time. If there's a chance to interrupt, this is it.

I quickly take a little breath, and start to lie,

"Miss Kamishiro knows about me and her, and keeps it a secret between us! Of course, she probably doesn't like me or anything, I guess!"

The police officer looks at me. Eh? That's why he probably never noticed the stunned look on Miss Kamishiro's face.

"Do you know Miss Kamishiro?"

The police officer said. I replied.

"Of course! She's my girlfriend's bodyguard after all!"

I don't know proof, but I'm guessing that to be the case.

I feel that Nitadori's family is rich, and to watch over their precious daughter, they hired a bodyguard to follow her.

There's enough clues for me to make this guess.

A month back, Nitadori spoke to me for the first time on the train.

Back then, she didn't have any luggage. Ever since the next week however, she brought her luggage along.

Why's that?

I guess that the first time, Nitadori left her luggage to Miss Kamishiro. She'll board the train along with Nitadori, as long as there aren't any other bodyguards around. There's no doubt about this.

Back then, Miss Conductor, who's looking a little pale now (I'm sorry!) didn't say anything, but immediately showed a skeptical look.

I guess that's probably because Nitadori's ticket is the green train carriage or a designated seat.

Then, Nitadori would have Miss Kamishiro sit in another carriage, or a front seat in the same carriage, before sitting beside me alone.

Once we arrive at the terminal, Nitadori will ask me to alight first, and then wait on the train for Miss Kamishiro to pick up her. They'll then head towards the relative's house in Mejiro--I don't know whether it's real or not, but in any case, they'll be heard towards the lodging for that day.


Miss Kamishiro gives a grim look, thinking about what to say.

Please go along with my words so that we can help Nitadori.

"To be honest--"

Miss Kamishiro speaks up, and the police officer looks at her.

Nitadori, who's been dumbfounded the entire time, turns her head slowly towards her bodyguard.

"I have no idea of Milady's preferences. I do think there is a more suitable boyfriend for her, but well--from my viewpoint, I can't nitpick anything about it.

She went along with it. Miss Kamishiro just went along with my acting.

Thank you! Miss Kamishiro! I won't forget about this kindness!

I shout in my heart.

"But I never imagined that he would ask Milady to do such a thing. This caused such a huge commotion. What do you think about this?"

Miss Kamishiro then proceeds to glare at me.

I'm really sorry. Sorry, sorry, sorry, sorry.

"Please don't glare at me! I wasn't the one choking her neck!"

"Of course! If you did that, I would have choked you instead!"

"You're as scary as ever, Miss Kamishiro!"

"Milady asked me to let both of you chat alone on the train at least. I thought that you wouldn't do anything indecent since it's a public place, so I agreed to it unwillingly."

"Ah...erm, understood. No, sorry. I--no, this guy here is reflecting on it."

I nearly let out a humble 'I'. That was close.


Nitadori remains dumbfounded there, giving a dazed look as she appears to have forgotten how to blink.

This is good. Please don't say anything.

I desperately try to convey this message to Nitadori through telepathy.

It's a sudden action, but I understand you really wanted to kill me.

It's only until the very end did I understand the reason for your actions.

But don't say anything. Please don't say anything.


The police officer asks Nitadori and me,

"So in other words, this isn't a crime, right? Both of you?"

I immediately answer,

"Of course! But--"


I continue to buy some time,


"What is it?"

I couldn't drag on anymore.

"Erm...I'm really sorry for causing such a great commotion that shocked everyone. Especially to Miss Conductor there--I'm really sorry."

I lower my head in apology.

I bend down to give a 90 degrees bow. Actually, I want to get on my knees.

"Ah? Eh? No…"

I can't see Miss Conductor's face, but I can hear her perturbed voice.

I lift my head, and see Nitadori speak to Miss Conductor with teary eyes, and a lifeless voice.

"I'm...really cause you, such trouble…"

This is the first time I heard Nitadori give such an inaudible voice. This is a precious experience. If it's inside a recording studio, this definitely will be an NG.

But now's OK.

You don't have to say anything now.

Right now, you--

Don't have to act.


"Erm...Mr Inspector?"

I look at the police officer.

I get the feeling that his eyes are as sharp as before, but just a little tender compared to it.

If I have to say that the previous expression is like eagle eyes that spotted a prey, the current expression is that of an eagle's eyes that want to rip its prey apart.

""What is it?"

"I'll explain the rest myself. Can I let her leave first? I heard that her family's rather strict."


"So do I. We shall take a ride back."

Miss Kamishiro too stands up, lowering her head.

"It is not a crime, so I can't say anything either."

The police officer says so. Again, Miss Kamishiro bows to her, and gentle lifts her up,

"Now then, Milady--shall we go? Let's wash your face before we leave."

It appears that Nitadori's able to stand up normally. I heave a sigh of relief.

Has Nitadori taken her wig and glasses back? I don't know. Miss Kamishiro holds Nitadori hand with her own, and the other holding onto the luggage bag, before she bids farewell to everyone present.

"Now then, everyone, we shall take our leave."


Nitadori too lowers her head in appreciation.

"There's a huge downpour out there. Be careful."

The police officer said.

The station attendant doesn't have a chance to say anything, and ushers the duo to the door.

I watch them leave.


"I shall be returning to my work then."

The conductor lady took her cap and got up, and bent her waist down, saying,

"My own fault--caused everyone to be really troubled. I'm really sorry about it."

This is a sportsman-like flair of apologizing.

Please apologize to those two policemen instead. Don't apologize to me. That'll bother me.

I couldn't say anything.

"Well, it's fine that nothing happened." Hearing the policemen say this, the train conductor lifted her head, and put the cap on before leaving the room.


Pam, I sat on the floor.

"Ha, hahaha…"

My knees are laughing. My face are laughing.

Having seen this, a police officer turns to his younger counterpart who's lazing away at the back,

"I'm fine here. I'll get there soon. So back first."

He gave such an order.


The young police officer answers with this brief reply, and turns to leave the infirmary.

Now then, it's just the police officer and me left.


I'm laughing despite everything that happened. I feel that I'm having a terrible look on my face, but I'm still living.

I never thought that I'll be encountering such a thing in my life. I recollect the past.

"I say."

Unlike before, the police officer starts to talk to me with an earnest tone. He then seats on the floor with a thus, sitting side by side with me. I shiver.

"...Wh-what is it?"

"Is this really okay?"

That's all he merely asks.

"It's fine."

And this is all I answer.

"I see. Now then, be careful on your way back."

"I will. Thanks."

"But I guess you better cover up that thing on your neck."

"Ah? Ahh, I guess…"

There are clear fingerprint marks on my neck, showing that I was strangled. Looking at this, I'm guessing that the fact I nearly got killed will be leaked.

Even in a major city like Tokyo, I guess there aren't that many people who were nearly choked to death. I'll attract a lot of attention.

I get onto my feet, look at the mirror, and try to pull my collar up. It manages to cover for the time being, but I have to hold it down with my hands. It'll be rather troublesome to continue maintaining this situation.

The police officer too gets to his feet, taking a face towel from the side of my bed, and hands it over to me.

"Hey, use this to over."

"Eh? --I can take this?"

"Just one, so it's fine, I suppose. I just need to say 'I threw it away after wiping off the nosebleed'."

Is this really alright, Mr Police Officer? But to be honest, he really helped me out a lot.

I put the towel over my neck.

It's a little weird, but no weirder than having a choke mark on my neck.

"Thanks. I'll buy a muffler from the shops in the station."

"That's good. I'll be heading back then. Don't forget your bag."


I take my bag out of the basket, pull the zipper, and sling it over my right shoulder.

"Thank you very much."

I then lower my head in thanks. The police officer then says to me,

"In your next meeting, pull yourself through."

I tilt my head, answering,

"I'm intending not to cause as much of an uproar as possible…"

The police officer then teased me.

"You idiot! I'm referring to when you meet her the next time!"

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